There has long been discussion about the trail that once linked the south eastern coast of NSW to the Snowy Mountains. It is called the Bundian Way. Prior to the invasion, Indigenous people moved between the coast, the Monaro Tablelands and the higher mountains. There are other similar stories from elsewhere in the mountains: for instance, the fact that early Gippsland settlers followed established trails from the Gippsland Plains to what is now Dinner Plain and Mt Hotham, and gold prospectors followed tracks up the Howqua Valley towards Mt Howitt.
Sadly, so much of this story has now been lost. In some good news, a book is due to be released shortly that looks at the question of the Bundian Way.
As reported in a story by Bill Brown for the ABC:
“Inspired by the stories he heard from the Aboriginal elders of south east NSW, John Blay searched for and found a 360 kilometre ancient Aboriginal pathway from Mt Kosciuszko to the coast. In his newly released book, On Track, he tells the story of his epic walks from the highest point of Australia to Twofold Bay near Eden”.
According to the story:
The Aboriginal people of south east New South Wales are known as Monaroo Bobberrer Gudu: people of the mountains and sea.
They moved between the coast and the Snowy Mountains feasting on bogon moths that gathered in mountain caves over summer, and travelling to the coast to feast on fish, lobster, abalone, and beached whales.
John Blay wanted to find the route of their pathway.
Check here for the full story.
And check here for the wonderful website on The Bundian Way, which says:
The Bundian Way is a shared history pathway between Targangal (Kosciuszko) and Bilgalera (Fisheries Beach) that connects the highest part of the Australian continent and the coast. On its way to the coast the Bundian Way crosses the Snowy River and passes through some of the wildest, most rugged and yet beautiful country in Australia. In many parts the influence of the old land management is still obvious in its Aboriginal landscapes. It is the first Aboriginal pathway to be listed on the NSW State Heritage Register.
On Track: searching out the Bundian Way will be launched at the Monaroo Bobberrer Gudu Cultural Centre at Jigamy Farm at 4pm on Saturday August 1.
John Blay will be in conversation with award winning historian Mark McKenna at Candelo Books in Bega at 5pm on August 6.
And the book will be launched at the Delegate School of Arts at 1pm on Saturday August 15.
John Blay on the Bundian Way leaving Bilgalara (Fisheries Beach on the southern shore of Twofold Bay, opposite Eden). The ancient Aboriginal track spans 360 kilometres across many landscapes from the coast up forested mountains to the Monaro plains and to Mt Kosciuszko, Australia’s highest point in the Snowy Mountains. (ABC South East NSW)–